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FRAME appoints XCellR8 founder as Chair of Trustees

FRAME has appointed Dr Carol Treasure, the founder and CEO of specialist animal-free contract testing laboratory XCellR8, as the new Chair of its Board of Trustees.

Carol joined FRAME’s Board of Trustees in June 2020. As Chair of Trustees, she will provide strategic direction and support, and will work alongside the charity’s team that is led by CEO Celean Camp. Carol is no stranger to FRAME – after completing her Physiology & Pharmacology degree at Sheffield, she undertook her PhD in the FRAME laboratory at the University of Nottingham.

Carol founded XCellR8 in 2008 to deliver in vitro (animal-free) testing, specialising in providing safety and efficacy data for cosmetics and chemicals at its GLP accredited laboratory in Warrington. The company works with many well-known cosmetics companies such as Lush and The Body Shop along with global ingredient suppliers.

Having seen the field of non-animal methods develop and evolve over the last 30 years, Carol will use her extensive experience and industry network to guide FRAME as a scientific charity, as she explains: “My work and FRAME’s purpose and vision are very much aligned, as we both strive for the replacement of animal testing in medical and scientific research and the use of scientifically and ethically advanced approaches. Now is an ideal time for FRAME to be building momentum and promoting the shift to scientifically advanced methods, as animal testing and animal welfare issues are continuing to garner more support from the public and the industry.

“Indeed, large consumer products companies are demonstrating that safety tests can be conducted without animals, and there is exciting progress being made across the household products and pharmaceutical industries. However, there is still a lot of work to be done to enact change, particularly considering the recent challenges to basic regulatory testing for cosmetics in the UK.”

As XCellR8 CEO, Carol is focused on finding replacements for animal tests and providing these to the cosmetics, personal care, household product and chemical industries. XCellR8 has recently received a 70% research grant from Innovate UK to continue development of its animal-free replacements for acute oral toxicity testing, which currently uses outdated median lethal dose (LD50) methods. Earlier this year, XCellR8 was awarded £100k of funding to carry out a six-month proof-of-concept study to develop in vitro tests free from animal-derived reagents. The prize, sponsored by Unilever and Astra Zenenca and co-funded by Unilever, is part of the first phase of the 2020 CRACK IT Challenges competition run by the NC3Rs.

FRAME CEO Celean Camp adds: “Carol is a highly valued member of FRAME’s Board of Trustees and the perfect fit for the role of Chair. Now is an important time for FRAME to be working in collaboration with both academic and industry partners and continuing to engage with and educate the next generation of scientists on alternatives to the use of animals in research. As Chair of Trustees, we are confident that Carol will be instrumental in helping to raise FRAME’s public profile and build on our relationship with the UK government to influence national policymaking. Post-Brexit, there is a real opportunity for the UK to bring change and continue to lead the way in both animal welfare and scientific innovation.”

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